40 years ago, you could have music in your pocket thanks to the Sony Walkman. Things may have changed slightly but let us never forget where it all began. Today we celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first portable music player. If you were born in the 2000’s or if you want to revisit this iconic start-up, check out this link.
July 1st, 1979 the world was thankfully changed forever. Sony released the iconic Walkman TPS-L2 which is the first ever real portable music player. Almost everyone had a Boombox and a portable radio as they had been around for a while, but the Walkman made the experience private, bringing in a whole new era of people listening to music away from their home. This would revolutionize the way we listen to music is a way that no other device really had ever don’t before.
In 2019 the only place you will see a Walkman is in your attic, in your grandparent’s junk drawer, or on the set of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy films where they missed the memo apparently. The full-on sea change that the Walkman caused is our lives is more apparent than ever.
We can’t just count out cassettes because we don’t use CDs anymore either (unless your mom just can’t get rid of that Shania Twain best hits album). Now we can carry thousands of songs right in our pocket, with the access to stream tens of thousands more from the internet anywhere in the world. Circling back, the whole idea of listening to your favorite jams on the go, without subjecting everyone nearby to your music – started with the Walkman.
Sony went on to create the “Discman” CD model and MiniDisc players, as well as modern portable media player devices that Sony still sells today. The company is certainly not the powerhouse it once was 40 years on, the changes the Walkman caused and how we related to music and technology are still as relevant as ever.